The Journey is…Experience: the good, the bad & the ugly.

Many of you have asked about my latest race…the 2011 Vulcan 10k

YAY! I finished! Lovely day...lovely EXPERIENCE.

I haven’t felt inspired to write about it yet…but I’m sure I will.

This is what I jotted down on race day:

-Success is peace of mind which is a direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you did your best to become the best you are capable of becoming. ~John Wooden

-Last year when I finished the Vulcan…I felt SATISFACTION.

-This year I was disappointed & said, “Well, that was a good experience.”

-“If you know you can do better, and you don’t.  You won’t be satisfied.” ~me

-“The good…the bad…and the ugly…”  That about sums up this race.

-I believe the very next day…I saw this video:  http://johnmaxwellteam.com/experience/

“The good, the bad & the ugly….”

The good….there are LOTS of good things I want to share with you.

The bad…I simply did not do my very best.  I did good…but not my best.  But I DID learn something.   SATISFACTION was a much better feeling than….EXPERIENCE.

I’m looking forward once again to training…next time(even though I said the same thing after Talladega)…I guarantee that I WILL PUT MY BEST EFFORT into training for the races ahead.

The ugly…there was NOTHING ugly about it.

I’m just glad to be able to say I was in the race & crossed the finish line!

More to come…

The Journey is….Illuminating

On this Thankful Thursday, I’m thankful for the gift of running!

il·lu·mi·nate
//
v. il·lu·mi·nat·ed, il·lu·mi·nat·ing,
il·lu·mi·nates

1. To provide or brighten with light.
2. To make understandable; clarify:
3. To enlighten intellectually or spiritually; enable to understand.

My friend, Jenny, shared this picture & the word Illuminating with me some time agoThis is a picture of the road where Jenny runs.  She tells me that this road saved her life, and I know exactly what she means!  The more I read about running, the more I see this is a common feeling in the running community.

For me, running is more than just exercising or achieving lifetime dreams & goals.  It’s time alone in the presence of the Lord.

It’s where I found answers.

It’s where God speaks to me clearly & often.

It’s where He brought healing for my broken spirit.

…and it’s where I learned to dream again…

In my darkness, He brought light…and I will forever be thankful to my loving Heavenly Father.  I’m thankful that He cares about the ONE sheep…me…only one of his many children.  How blessed I am, that He would reach out to me right where I was, expecting nothing in return.  It’s the love of God that would say to me “Get up, let’s go for a run….” 

I’m thankful that He cared enough 

to pick me up & 

lead me back into this race of life.

That’s my Jesus, full of Love, Mercy & Grace!

The Journey is….embracing the past, present & future.

THANKFUL THURSDAY

~I’m thankful for A Timely Reminder

A Reminder to:

Embrace & enjoy my past.

Embrace, enjoy & truly live my present.

Embrace & look forward to my future.

~I’m thankful for the older gentleman that I met at the park.

As we talked, he wistfuly reminisced of his running days &

his own 48 minute finishes at the Vulcan Run 10k, some 15 years ago…

I knew he loved that feeling as much as I do now.

…It blessed me to see a much greater love quickly transfer to his great-grandaughter as she returned from feeding the squirrels.

My brief encounter with him reminded me to:

Be thankful for every breath I have, the health of my youth, the opportunity to exercise on the days I’d rather not…

and

To look forward to the new experiences to come that will eventually replace the dreams I am currently living.

Thankfully,

Julia

The Journey is….Ninja

Fall is my favorite season!During yesterday’s run, as I enjoyed watching the leaves fall gracefully from the trees, one of them tapped me lightly on the head during it’s descent.  I felt that possibly it was God.  Kind of like the times you walk by a little kid & tap them affectionately on the head.  It made me smile anyway.

Well, today…

I was taking a breather.  Walking with a friend, watching her daughter feed the squirrels…..

and this ACORN came out of nowhere and just HIT me right on the top of my head!  It hurt a little for a split second.

What did that mean!?!

NOTHING…except maybe that God has a sense of humor.

 

….or was it REALLY the deviant park squirrels,

 practicing their NINJA acorn throwing skills…

…and laughing…

 🙂

God’s richest blessings to you on this beautiful fall day!

~Julia

The Journey is…Thankful Thursday!

THANKFUL THURSDAY!  Just a few things that make me want to say…”Thank you Lord, that was very nice of you to do that for me”.

WINDY DAYS. 

Those rare moments that I cherish.  Have you ever had them?  Where just for a moment you can go back in time & feel like a child.  Something about the wind this week, instead of the usual muggy, Alabama heat…

There were 3 distinct moments this week, where the cool, fall wind took me back to those days when life was all about playing with friends & having fun.  It was if I were right there, back in the culdesac on Tinker AFB….in the never ending OKLAHOMA WIND!  I just closed my eyes & soaked it in for a moment.  I LOVED IT!  Thanks God!

THE HOLY SPIRIT.

The awareness of His presence in my life.  He leads, guides, comforts, strengthens….

“…And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Comforter
(Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener, and Standby), that He
may remain with you forever…” – John 14:16

Thank you Holy Spirit!  I needed that!

RUNNING.

Someone mentioned how cold it would be to run the Vulcan since it is held the first weekend in November.  I started explaining how wonderful it was going to be….running with thousands of people in the cold brisk air…all with the same goal in mind.  I started getting really excited about it, just talking about it.  Then I realized…they weren’t feeling it.  Not even one bit.

I’m thankful that the Lord puts things inside of us for our own pleasure…be it baking, gardening, sports, music, etc.  That’s very nice of Him.  🙂

WONDERFUL PARENTS!

I will have to dedicate a whole blog just to them soon!  I love them!

….and I could go on & on & on……God is so good!  He IS the Lord of my life.  I am thankful!

The Journey is….TBH

To Be Honest:

I am really a grumpy old hag…with high expectations…

…who pouts when things don’t turn out like I planned them to.

I am scatterbrained, disorganized, an awful cook & housekeeper….

…and I burn my family’s favorite clothes items with the iron.

I don’t like pets.

(But secretly I believe that’s because they all die anyway,

and that hurts.)

I put on my happy face when I am in public.

I read my own blog all the time because it reminds me of who I really am,

and who God created me to be.

It is God speaking to me.

I feel like Forrest Gump when I run.

He was frustrated.

He ran.

3 years later he was ok. 

He stopped running.

I will not post this on FB…and why I would blog about it is beyond me.

I know…

the truth is…

the real me is who God says I am.

The real me will be back later.

Jesus loves me anyway.

I’m going to go run now. 

Goodbye.

The Journey is….FOCUS

SATISFACTION part 2

Time to get focused.  My Goals for the Vulcan Run 2011 ~ 6.2 miles  http://vulcanrun.com/

Goals:

-Loose 20 lbs by race day, Nov. 5, 2011.  I have lost 2 so far…only 18 to go.  The first thing I see when looking at this year’s race pictures will not be my “mom” stomach.  I have 12 weeks left…I will loose at least 1.5 lbs per week.

-Finish in under 1 hour.  (Last year’s time was 1:06:49  /  10.46 pace)  My pace will be under 10 minutes per mile.

-Beat my family (even Emily)  😉

Plan:

-Wise, healthy food choices.  Portion control.  Cut out the junk food….remembering that I love ME, more than the unhealthy food(or a camera)  Click here for an explanation about the camera:  The Journey is Inspiration

-Training:  http://www.halhigdon.com/10ktraining/10kinter.htm

– I don’t really care if I beat my family, but it is fun trying.

Last years race pictures (you have to have a Facebook account to view these pics)SATISFACTION part 1 ~ The Vulcan Run 2010

The path to the Vulcan 2010 (my first 10k journal)

 

Success is peace of mind which is a direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you did your best to become the best you are capable of becoming. ~John Wooden
‎Running is a big question mark that’s there each and every day. It asks you, ‘Are you going to be a wimp or are you going to be strong today?’ -Peter Maher

The Journey is…Random Running Thoughts

Random thoughts about running(and life) that are racing through my brain…

-When you accomplish your goal & finish a race…you must always have a NEXT in mind.  Otherwise the exhilaration & feeling of accomplishment lends itself to emptiness & lack of motivation.  It would be easy to fall back to square one.

-After last weeks 5k(where my family all ran together)…no one has wanted to run w/me all week!!!  But, I understand…I felt the same way after my first 3 races.  The Lord always sent me some form of encouragement to keep going forward.

-Even when you don’t feel it…take the next step anyway.  Feelings come & go…right choices ultimately take you where you want to be.  I enjoyed having Matt back on the track with me this morning!

-Every race, even if it’s not pretty (ie~my Talladega run)…has it’s own unique triumphs, struggles & meaning.

-Can’t get MILE ELEVEN at the Talladega out of my head.  At a point in life that I had never been past…never ran more than 11 miles at one time(a half marathon is 13.1 miles)…the Lord gave me this song on my i-pod, it started playing exactly as I passed the 11 mile marker.  That moment changed my life.  I am still not able to comprehend completely all that moment meant to me.  That song summarizes my life & my relationship with the Lord.  I now listen to it every time that I run.

I’m sure that I’ll dedicate a blog to each topic someday….but for now…maybe my mind can rest…

The Journey is…Inspiration

“Find your why…and then live your choice with passion.”

For the last 3 weeks I have been attempting to blog about the things that inspire me to move….mainly…the things that inspire me to run.

It starts out nice enough, it goes something like this:

in·spire [ in spir ]
  1. stimulate somebody to do something: to encourage somebody to greater
    effort, enthusiasm, or creativity
  2. provoke particular feeling: to arouse a particular feeling in somebody
  3. cause creative activity: to stimulate somebody to do something,
    especially creative or artistic work

I have found that there are things in life that inspire me to action.  They inspire me to get out of my comfort zone & change my normal pattern of behavior….typically for the better.

For example:  Stepping on a mouse trap, inspires me to jump around, screaming like a mad woman 🙂  Completely out of character for me…but evidently, from the reaction of my children) quite funny to watch.

I’m fine by the way….


Well, the rest of that blog isn’t coming together.  My thoughts typically are a jumbled up mess in my head, until I sit down & type them out.  This time, they are just staying there…tangled up in my brain.

But during the process, it caused me to contemplate what would inspire me to change my eating habits.  What would make me WANT to do this…because so far, the WANT to eat junk has been greater than the WANT to loose weight.  With very little thought I came up with my answer.  A new camera!  My old one died….on the first day of our family vacation mind you!  I’ll just say…I was very sad.  If you know me well, this would make sense.  If not…you might think I’m a nut.  If someone offered to buy me the camera of my dreams, along with lenses & flashes, etc…if I ate healthy for  xxx # of days…I would without a doubt, have the will power to resist every sweet thing that was offered to me DAILY!  It does seem that everywhere I go there is some kind of delicious food tempting me.  You see…I would then have a “WHY”.  Why would I not eat that?  Because if I made the right choice…I could have the amazing piece of technology to record precious moments of life that will never happen again.  Photographs for us to cherish FOREVER…or at least until Jesus comes back….

Then I think…that’s pitiful.  Is not my own body…my own health & quality of living more important to me than a camera, an object?  So now…every time I think about the food…I think about the camera & MY value…yes…I AM more valuable to myself than a camera.

So here’s to W1D2 (week 1/day 2)!  TWO days of eating healthy(again, for the zillionth time)!!!  YAY ME!!!!

I believe with anything that you value in life, you must find your inspiration.  What is your reason or purpose for doing something…your WHY?  Find your why…and then live your choice with passion.

~Julia

The Journey is…HOT!!!

A LESSON IN MERCY & GRACE

Ran with Matt today…at 1pm, in Humid, ALABAMA, 90 degree weather!!!  It was his idea.  I prefer cool, early morning running, but had woken up too late for that.  I made my feeble attempt at excuses, but as always…his encouragement was just what I needed to get out there and get going.

That was TOUGH!

The same path that I typically run with ease(kind of), was at times torture today!  In the end, we finished…and, as usual…it was a great run.  Worth every minute!

All I could think today was…

How often we judge others in their race of life…never thinking of the extreme conditions they may be running in.  Some we know…some we don’t.  We may have been down a similar path, but that doesn’t make it the same race.  May I be a woman of God’s unlimited mercy & grace…